Grade: Middle
Subject: Science

#2008. NTeQ Science Lesson

Science, level: Middle
Posted Tue Nov 14 07:47:58 PST 2000 by Virgil Peter Denegri (
Graduate Student at U.N.T., Denton, TX , U.S.A.
Materials Required: Computer, Internet connection, Printer
Activity Time: 2-3 periods
Concepts Taught: Dinosaurs

NTeQ Science Lesson Plan
based on Internet Usage
by Virgil Peter Denegri

Subject Area: Biology
Grade Level: 6 - 8
Duration: 2 - 3 class periods

Learning Objectives:
1. Students will get acquainted with the use of the World Wide Web.
2. Students will produce a report on the types of dinosaurs found in our state of Texas
using a word processing software.

Computer Functions:
Use the Internet to gather information and pictures or images of dinosaurs belonging to the state of Texas.

Specify Problem:
There are many kinds of dinosaur remains found by scientists throughout the United States, but students will be involved in finding out about the dinosaurs typical of Texan territory. In the process of gathering information, students should get a working knowledge of the use of the Internet by surfing the World Wide Web in collaboration with each other.

Data Manipulation:
Word processing will be used to create a science report from gathered information from the Internet search, and later on, edit it for a final draft. Students will be working in small groups (2 or 3 children) and making decisions on what information and what pictures to select from the Internet sources they will be using.

Results Presentation:
The final product will be printouts of reports, which will be word-processed black and white documents with graphics from the Internet. The students may color these graphics with markers or color pencils. A color printer may be used if it is available.

Activities while at the Computer:
Since the students may not have much knowledge on how to use the Internet for research, there will be some predetermined bookmarks on Netscape or whatever Internet Service Provider is for the school. They are the following:

Dinosaur Valley State Park (Glen Rose)
(Information on dinosaur Tracks)
Dinosaur Valley State Park (Glen Rose)
(Pictures of dinosaur Tracks)

Texas Dinosaurs!

Dinosaur Gallery

Prehistoric Timeline

Google Search Engine
(To search for dinosaurs' names and descriptions)

Dinosaur Dictionary

Dinosaur Genera List

1. Students are to connect to those websites and get the pertaining information for their project.

2. Students will open a new document on a word processing program, and give it the name of their group, and each group will save the document on the desktop or a floppy disk that the teacher will be collecting at the end of the period.

3. Students will paraphrase, if possible, any dinosaur information found that the group decides to keep, and directly type it on the open word processing document. Students will have a choice of just taking notes and do the word processing later at the next computer lab time period.

4. The suggested web sites contain pictures that students can copy and paste directly onto their WP document.
a. To copy an image, the only thing they have to do is right click the mouse directly on the picture they want to copy, then move the cursor and select copy.
b. To paste an image onto their WP document, on the edit menu select paste.

5. Each group of students will get a printout of their report.

Activities Prior to the Computer:
1. The teacher will give the students an introduction on the topic of dinosaurs, and will announce the students that they will be using the Internet to do research on the subject, but they will be concerned on fossils found in only the state of Texas.

2. Students will form groups of 2 or 3 children, and outline how they would like the dinosaur information to be organized on their report. The teacher will give ideas on how to do this, for example, the students could have images of dinosaurs that lived in Texas appear at the beginning of their report, and then include the dinosaurs' descriptions separately, or they could have dinosaur images followed by their descriptions.

3. The teacher will give students brief instruction on the basics of web surfing and how to use search engines like to look for information. Then the teacher will discuss the Acceptable Use Policy with them.

Activities After Using the Computer:
1. Students will discuss in class about the use of the Internet as a research tool.

2. Students will discuss about their findings and the ways they could have done better research related to the topic of dinosaurs.

3. Students will compare their reports in class.

Supporting Activities:
1. The teacher will obtain, if possible, a plastic model of a T-Rex dinosaur skull for the students to see in class, and let students give any comments or previous knowledge.

2. Students may bring to class fossils that they have collected for other students to look at, and talk about how they came about to getting those fossils.

3. Students can use a magnifying glass to look at small fossils and draw pictures of them.

4. Teacher will attempt to arrange for a field trip to Glen Rose Dinosaur Park for students to observe the dinosaur tracks by the stream. Children will not be allowed to get in the water, unless their parents are with them.

Grammar will only be checked. Teacher will create a rubric to evaluate the following:

10 pts for information organization skills

10 pts for creative ideas for final draft

10 pts for how information included their paper makes sense